This time of the year our attention turns from 2016 to 2017. This also means the dreaded term “New Year’s Resolutions” rears its ugly head. So, I thought I’d suggest some things for you to think about leading up to 2017 and the week or two after that might help…
Don’t make Resolutions. Instead, make promises or even contracts with yourself. If you want to make it even more real, write out a contract on paper and sign it. This makes your promise a bit more real and easier for you to remember.
Don’t be so concerned about getting rid of things you’re upset about or frustrated in your life (losing weight, being better at something, etc.). Instead, focus on what you can add in 2017 that will make your life better. For instance, if you want to lose weight (don’t we all?) instead of promising to join a gym and get up at 4:30 am every day to exercise, which in 3 weeks, you’ll end up stopping. Try focusing on adding healthy things. Commit to eating more fruit or make a healthy fruit shake instead of that sugary soda. Find positive things you can add to your life and soon those negative things you were worried about will drop away.
Go Slow!!! Man, this is one important!?! Want to see some changes in your life? Baby Steps! Make a list and then edit it down. Let’s say you come up with 12 things you’d like to see happen in your life. Actually, schedule them each month. January – eat fruits, nuts and berries instead of candy. February – turn the electronic devices off during dinner. You get the idea. Don’t plan on sweeping changes. Trust me, you won’t lose 40 pounds. But baby steps become significant changes.
We all have “To-Do Lists.” I recommend writing a “To-Done List!” What is this? It’s a list where we sit down at some point during the week and write down our successes! What are the things we’ve done that went well, helped someone else, made us feel good, gave us some relaxation or peace? We are programmed to forget these moments. WELL DON’T!!! Write them down and celebrate them. Then, at the end of each month, take a look at those 4 pieces of paper with your successes and congratulate yourself for the things you’ve accomplished that month!
Make yourself realize the truth about what you want to change or accomplish this coming year. Are they things you really want to accomplish or are they things you “think” you should accomplish? Are they things others say you need to accomplish? Are they reasonable? Only after you spend some time really asking yourself these questions, can you decide to make those changes.
Understand right now that you will fail at a few of your goals. And that is OK! We aren’t going to succeed at everything we do. So, when we fall short of what we wanted, remember that you’re closer to that goal than you were before you started. For instance, if you wanted to drink water instead of soda but you’re “sneaking” 2 or 3 sodas a week. Well, you’re probably drinking more water and less soda than you were – so good job! Don’t be afraid to adjust your goals and especially your expectations.
When it comes to 2017, all we can do is to simply do our best! That sounds so basic and simple but it is the truth. Sometimes our best will fall short of our goals. Sometimes our best will be less than others expect out of us. Sometimes our best will allow us to achieve what we hoped for. Sometimes our best will allow us to achieve something we would have never dreamed of accomplishing. Just do your best and be honest with yourself. There’s a reason why your friends like you, your family loves you and those you might not even know are inspired by you. That reason is because the “you” that they see, is pretty incredible! So, this year spend some time getting to know that side of you, the inspiring and amazing and incredible you.
Happy New Year!
BONUS THOUGHT –
This year, whenever you find yourself getting mad, sad, frustrated, enraged, etc., stop in that moment and immediately find something nice or good you can do for someone else! If you’re in the car then head into the nearest fast food place and pull in the drive through and pay for the car behind you. At home or in the office, pick up the phone and make a quick call to a loved one or friend just to tell them – Hi and you care about them. Send a text or Direct Message with a nice comment. If you’re out somewhere, find someone you can compliment. It might be about anything – tell them thank you, nice job, etc. Trust me, when you do this, you’ll be amazed at how your mood changes. After all, that one small gesture you make might turn out to be a huge difference in someone’s day. It might start a chain of good will and positive energy. It might literally change someone’s life, all because you cared enough to be kind.